4 Generations in the workforce

Nothing new, I guess. However let us start with the definition of those Generations currently in the workforce, in order to have a common understanding of which cohorts we refer to. Mainly, the definitions differ between different regions, based on societal and economic developements. The following boundaries reflect a rather Western-European perspective.

The Matures born until 45 should have more or less retired by now, so we we can focus on the following generations.



  • Baby Boomers – born after WW2 this generation grew up with a lot of pressure to rebuild the nation and to grow the economy.
  • Generation X – grew into a society that was still shaped by the late consequences of WW2 and needed to overcome a situation of little economic wealth and security. However, this generation tried to increase efficiency (in almost every manner, no matter if private or professional life) and thus advanced to a generation of “Zero Mistakes”. As the engagement and efficiency at work increased, this generation started the quest for a propper balance between work and life.
  • Generation Y – also called the millenials, those that have been teenagers around the millenial. First generation that grew up at the edge of the digital revolution. The first ‘true’ digital natives will be found in this cohort – those that not only use computers and digital applications, but they develop a literacy around computing and digital skills. A generation that for the first time works under a new business order – mobility, growth learning and quest for purpose are major themes. Some first movers try to integrate their work and life into once.
  • Generation Z – just entering the universities and the workforce, those born after 2000. I am curious to check on latest developements and findings around this cohort. Currently I do not dare to put any suggestions how this generation will develop.